Andrew Slater’s music documentary Echo In The Canyon opened with a bang in two Los Angeles theaters over the Memorial holiday weekend, crooning out the second-highest opening weekend per theater average of 2019, solidifying further non-fiction as the star genre among the specialties so far this year.
The Greenwich Entertainment release grossed a three-day estimate of $103,716 from its showings at the ArcLight Hollywood and The Landmark in West L.A., giving the title a $51,858 PTA. The year’s top debut average remains with Avengers: Endgame at $76,601 in over forty-six hundred theaters. It is also the best PTA for a doc this year.
Echo In The Canyon debuted at last year’s final Los Angeles Film Festival where Greenwich first viewed the feature. The film celebrates the explosion of popular music that came out of LA’s Laurel Canyon in the mid-’60s as folk went electric and The Byrds, The Beach Boys, Buffalo Springfield and The Mamas and the Papas gave birth to the California Sound.
“Exhibitors throughout the country have been supportive and the appeal of this music was not exactly isolated to L.A.,” noted Greenwich’s Ed Arentz ahead of its release last week. “Although L.A. is where the story is set and where the music industry is based, the mid-’60s Southern California and the California Sound evoked by let’s say, The Mamas & The Papas’ ‘California Dreamin’’ still has a fairly widespread hold on the national imagination.”
Arentz noted that advanced ticket sales were “robust” ahead of its rollout and the company had expected a “strong” PTA. The numbers were undoubtedly buoyed by Q&As at the two venues, featuring musical performances by Jakob Dylan, Cat Power, Jade Castrinos and special guests playing music of the period.
Greenwich will take Echo in the Canyon to New York next week.
Fellow doc The Proposal from Oscilloscope came in with the second-best PTA showing among the titles reporting numbers Sunday. Directed by Jill Magid, the 2018 Tribeca Film Festival premiere has a three-day estimate of $12,100 from its exclusive run at IFC Center in New York with an expected four-day of $14K. Ahead of its launch, the company said it saw a “nice hole” in the market for an art-focused doc. Oscilloscope also noted strong pre-sales ahead of the weekend.
Said the company’s Andrew Carlin: “I think we’ll be able to parlay the success of this weekend into a very robust theatrical release.”
Frédéric Tcheng’s fashion doc Halston about one of America’s first superstar designers, Roy Halston Frowick — better known simply as Halston — opened exclusively at the Quad in New York, taking in $11,824 in the three-day. Distributor 1091 had success with Tcheng’s previous directorial, Dior And I, (released under its previous manifestation as The Orchard) which it opened in April, 2015 in two locations, grossing almost $46K ($22,886 PTA). The title went on to cume just over a million dollars in theaters. Halston will need a little more push down the runway to catch up.
Bleecker Street’s The Tomorrow Man with John Lithgow and Blythe Danner had a more tepid start in four locations in New York, L.A. as well as Phoenix. The Sundance title is tracking over $19K in the three-day with an estimated $25,129 for the full weekend, putting its long holiday PTA at $6,282. The film by writer-director Noble Jones will head to about five markets next weekend with more cities set for June.
Fox International Pictures’ India’s Most Wanted had the widest start among the specialties, opening in 110 North American theaters. The title had a slow start with a $100K three-day estimate, averaging $909.
Aviva Kempner’s doc The Spy Behind Home Plate played an exclusively at The Avalon Theater in Washington, D.C.
The film, about Moe Berg, the Jewish baseball player turned OSS spy, and timed to open over Memorial Day weekend in the capital to honor veterans, is estimated to have grossed $10,250. Kempner’s 2000 doc release Life & Times of Hank Greenberg from Cowboy Pictures cumed over $1.7M in theaters.
Among other reporting openers, Kino Lorber played dreamed-fantasy Diamantino in a single location for $6,412, while PBS Distribution bowed Barak Goodman’s Woodstock: Three Days That Defined a Generation in two New York locations for $8,150 and a $4,074 PTA.
A24 added 19 runs for The Souvenir in its second frame. The drama grossed a three-day estimate of over $141K in 23 theaters and an expected four-day $180,817, averaging $6,152 and $7,862 respectively. The title had last weekend’s best specialty PTA in its bow, taking in $78,400 for a $19,600 average. The Souvenir has cumed $292,473.
Filmmaker Ritesh Batra’s India-set drama Photograph jumped its count by 111 to 124 theaters in its second weekend. The Amazon Studios release grossed $119,564, for a slow $964 PTA. It opened in 13 locations last weekend for just under $36K, averaging $2,754. It has cumed $169,374.
Neon’s The Biggest Little Farm joined the ranks of the non-fiction seven-figure club this weekend following an expansion of 135 theaters in its third weekend. Directed by John Chester, the Telluride/Toronto debut has a Friday to Sunday estimate of over $492K and a full holiday weekend $640K in 180 theaters, averaging a solid $2,735 and $3,557 respectively.
Neon more aggressively expanded Apollo 11, the year’s highest-grossing doc to date, bringing its third-weekend count to 588. It averaged $1,977 from a $1.16M gross that weekend. The third weekend was also the title’s widest. Apollo 11 is still in theaters after 13 weekends. It has cumed over $8.7M.
Also, its Aretha Franklin doc Amazing Grace is set to cross $4M over Memorial weekend. In 152 theaters, Neon is estimating a four-day $187,200 gross, averaging a four-day $1,232.
SPC added 44 runs for drama All Is True by Kenneth Branagh in its third frame. The title took in a three-day $138,207, averaging $2,158, down 30% from last weekend’s $3,082 PTA from a $61,637 gross in 20 theaters. All Is True has cumed $295K.
IFC Films played Non-Fiction in an additional 35 theaters in its fourth outing, grossing over $124K in 60 locations, averaging $2,072 in the three-day. That is down by just 9% from its $2,268 PTA last weekend from a $56,704 gross in 25 theaters. Non-Fiction has totaled $315,188.
Sony Classics’ The White Crow by Ralph Fiennes jumped to 356 runs from last weekend’s 136. The title grossed an estimated three-day of $357,361, averaging $1,004. The weekend sent the title over seven figures, bringing its cume to over $1.18M.
Diamantino (Kino Lorber) NEW [1 Theater] Weekend $6,412
Echo In The Canyon (Greenwich Entertainment) NEW [2 Theaters] Weekend $103,716, Average $51,858
Halston (1091) NEW [1 Theater] Weekend $11,824
India’s Most Wanted (Fox International Productions) NEW [110 Theaters] Weekend $100,000, Average $909
The Tomorrow Man (Bleecker Street) NEW [4 Theaters] Weekend $19,327; 4-day: $25,129, Average $4,832; 4-day: $6,282, Cume $23,739; $29,541 (Wed. Open)
The Proposal (Oscilloscope) NEW [1 Theater] Weekend $12,100; 4-day: $14,000
The Spy Behind Home Plate (The Ciesla Foundation) NEW [1 Theater] Weekend $10,250
Woodstock: Three Days That Defined a Generation (PBS Distribution) NEW [2 Theaters] Weekend $8,150, Average $4,074
Photograph (Amazon Studios) Week 2 [124 Theaters] Weekend $119,564, Average $964, Cume $169,925
The Souvenir (A24) Week 2 [23 Theaters] Weekend $141,496; 4-day: $180,817, Average $6,152; 4-day: 7,862, Cume $292,473
Trial By Fire (Roadside Attractions) Week 2 [45 Theaters] Weekend $11,575, Average $257, Cume $136,255
HOLDOVERS / THIRD+ WEEKENDS
All Is True (Sony Pictures Classics) Week 3 [64 Theaters] Weekend $138,207, Average $2,158, Cume $295,062
The Biggest Little Farm (Neon) Week 3 [180 Theaters] Weekend $492,350; 4-day: $640,265, Average $2,735; 4-day: $3,557, Cume $1,170,203
My Son (Cohen Media Group) Week 3 [5 Theaters] Weekend $971, Average $194, Cume $13,787
Meeting Gorbachev (1091) Week 4 [32 Theaters] Weekend $30,310, Average $947, Cume $147,187
Non-Fiction (IFC Films) Week 4 [60 Theaters] Weekend $124,318, Average $2,072, Cume $315,188
The River And the Wall (Gravitas Ventures) Week 4 [3 Theaters] Weekend $4,500, Average $1,500, Cume $123,234
The White Crow (Sony Pictures Classics) Week 5 [356 Theaters] Weekend $357,361, Average $1,004, Cume $1,181,708
The Chaperone (PBS Distribution) Week 9 [22 Theaters] Weekend $13,430, Average $610, Cume $566,792
Red Joan (IFC Films) Week 6 [126 Theaters] Weekend $128,732, Average $1,022, Cume $1,389,752
Wild Nights With Emily (Greenwich Entertainment) Week 7 [ Theaters] Weekend $, Average $, Cume $
Amazing Grace (Neon) Week 7 [152 Theaters] Weekend $145,200; 4-day: 187,200, Average $955; 4-day: $1,232, Cume $4,000,633
Apollo 11 (Neon) Week 13 [20 Theaters] Weekend $20,000; 4-day: $26,300, Average $1,000; 4-day: $1,315, Cume $8,715,754
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